Singapore morning news for January 16

Singapore morning news for January 16

Singapore morning news

Office market’s takeup rate hit 1.59 million sqft in 2018
In 2018, the office market outperformed expectations despite a relatively lacklustre performance in Q4 as CBRE Research noted that annual take up rate hit 1.59 million sqft, which is about 25 soccer fields in size. This beat the net supply of 1.51 million sqft, whilst vacancy was reduced to 5.8% as of end 2018 from 6.1% as of end 2017.
— Singapore Business Review

Singapore’s privacy watchdog fines IHiS $750,000 and SingHealth $250,000 for data breach
The Personal Data Protection Commission meted out its largest fine to IHiS for lapses in securing patient data which resulted in the nation’s worst data breach.
— Straits Times

Singapore agencies told to exercise restraint over intrusions: Minister
Singapore has the ability to compel intruding Malaysian government vessels to leave its territorial waters, Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen said in Parliament yesterday.
— Straits Times

Is Singapore on the way to embracing cryptocurrency as part of the financial system?
The digital currency that has swept across the globe in the last few years cannot be ignored any longer. The recent success of Singapore’s “Token Day” to mark the 10-year anniversary of cryptocurrency, showed the potential for crypto adoption in across the island-nation.
— Asean Today

Not cheap or cheerful: Singapore hawker centers struggle with new business model
A social enterprise model for some of Singapore’s hawker centers has been criticized over high costs and poor management, as the wealthy nation tries to revitalize its popular food stalls.
— Reuters

Singapore has world’s largest number of international e-commerce businesses – but founders say it’s getting harder to expand overseas
Over half of the 600-over Singapore online businesses surveyed said they expanded overseas within their first year.
— Business Insider

Inside road rage: What turns Singaporean drivers into monsters?
Is it the stress of life, the value we place on our cars, or poor driving skills that lead to frayed tempers? One driver gets help to deal with his rage, on the programme Talking Point
— Channel NewsAsia

Singapore aiming to become region’s urban agriculture technology hub: Koh Poh Koon
Singapore has the right ingredients to make it the urban agriculture and aquaculture technology hub in the region, Dr Koh Poh Koon, Senior Minister of State for Trade and Industry, said on Tuesday (Jan 15).
— Straits Times

Singapore urged to reform law on hiring domestic workers
Singapore had to overhaul its rules and systems for the hiring of foreign domestic workers to put a stop to forced labour in the wealthy city-state, campaigners said on Tuesday.
— BusinessDay

PSA Int’l handled 81m TEUs of containers in FY18; up 7 per cent
PSA INTERNATIONAL handled 81 million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) of containers at its port projects around the world for the year ending Dec 31, 2018, up 7 per cent from a year ago.
— The Business Times

Tech hiring ramps up as Singapore nears tech-hub status: Glassdoor report
WITH hiring demand in the tech sector catching up with demand from the finance industry, Singapore appears well on track to add “tech hub” to its financial-centre status, says a report published by Glassdoor.
— The Business Times

New laws proposed to ensure Singapore’s food security
A new agency set up to oversee food safety and security may be able to require importers of key food items to have plans to mitigate the impact of food supply disruptions.
— Channel NewsAsia

Food importers may be required to help tackle supply disruptions
Importers of key food items may be required to come up with preventive strategies and other plans to mitigate the impact of supply disruptions to Singapore, which imports more than 90 per cent of its food and is vulnerable to factors affecting global supply, such as disease outbreaks and climate change.
— Straits Times

Changes to anti-drug laws based on evidence, not about ‘going hard or soft’, says Shanmugam
Changes to the Misuse of Drugs Act that put greater focus on rehabilitation and shift a little away from the philosophy of long-term detentions were passed in Parliament on Tuesday (Jan 15).
— Today Singapore

Singapore urged to fix rules on hiring domestic workers to stop forced labor
Singapore must overhaul its rules and systems for the hiring of foreign domestic workers to put a stop to forced labor in the wealthy city-state, campaigners said on Tuesday.
— Reuters

Premier League opens first international office in Singapore
The Premier League’s first international office opened in Singapore on Monday (Jan 14) as the football body looks to ramp up its fight against piracy.
— Channel News Asia

Singapore investors emerge as new landlords in India
Singapore-based investors and developers have over the years gained a firm foothold in India’s property market and are now venturing beyond commercial offices to bet on emerging sectors such as logistics, warehousing and urbanization projects.
— LiveMint

Youth who prefer social media for news less informed of current affairs
Youth in Singapore who get the news from social media platforms are less informed of current affairs, a recent survey by Singapore Polytechnic students has shown.
— Straits Times

Case of company deceiving MOM into giving ineligible foreigners Employment Passes is not new
The recent case of a company deceiving the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) into issuing Employment Passes (EPs) to foreigners who do not meet the strict eligibility requirements is not new. Yesterday, we reported that the MOM since fined GD Group (the company that runs the Penang Culture chain of restaurants) $94,500 and barred the company from […]
— The Independent sg

Singapore’s former civil service chief launches SME digital tools
A Singapore agency run by the country’s former Cabinet Secretary is giving start-up businesses free training in digital business solutions, in a bid to improve their growth and resilience.
— Global Government Forum

Khaw: Missed deadlines from Malaysia is the reason for JB-Singapore RTS delay
In a written parliamentary response on Monday, January 14, Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan said that the Johor Bahru-Singapore Rapid Transit System (RTS) link project is experiencing delays in its scheduled timelines. In fact, according to Channel NewsAsia, he said the project is “not progressing well. MP Ang Wei Neng had asked for an update […]
— The Independent sg

Singapore Really, Really Free Market is back again for the 10th year in a row
The Singapore Really Really Free Market (SRRFM) is a market organised by Post-Museum, a cultural and social enterprise. Based on a movement that started in America by anarchist groups in response to the ill effects of capitalism who wanted to promote a more environmentally and socially responsible lifestyle, a ‘really, really free market’ doesn’t involve …
— The Online Citizen

Digital insurance firm Singapore Life raises $33M ahead of Southeast Asia expansion
Digital insurance firm Singapore Life has started 2019 with a bang after it raised $33 million across two investments as it eyes new market expansions in Southeast Asia.
— TechCrunch

2 REITs to Watch During This Earnings Season
Fortune Real Estate Investment Trust (SGX: F25U) and Cromwell European Real Estate Investment Trust (SGX: CNNU) will be providing important updates in its next earnings release. Here’s what investors should be looking out for.
— Motley Fool sg

SingHealth cyberattack: Govt to fully adopt COI recommendations, S Iswaran says
The Cyber Security Agency of Singapore has accelerated the implementation of the Cybersecurity Act, with all critical information infrastructures (CIIs) designated by end 2018.
— Channel News Asia

NSS asks HDB to release full report on environmental study at Tengah
With disputes over another environmental study, this time about Tengah where forests are being cleared for public housing, environmentalists are calling for the Housing Development Board (HDB) to release the full report to the public. However, it seems HDB has no intention of doing so. Responding to queries from The Strait Times (ST), a spokesperson …
— The Online Citizen

Singapore 2018 bunker volumes dip, outlook for this year uncertain
Sales of marine fuels in Singapore, the world’s biggest ship fuelling port by volume, totalled 49.8 million tonnes in 2018, down 2 percent from a record the year before, the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) said on Monday.
— Hellenic Shipping News

1 Blue-Chip Share to Buy If You Are New to Investing
Here’s why Singapore Exchange Limited (SGX: S68) is a great starter stock.
— Motley Fool sg

Singapore National Eye Centre to reduce charges for certain complex procedures from March
The Singapore National Eye Centre (SNEC) will reduce charges for certain complex procedures with higher fees from March this year, following a review requested by the Ministry of Health (MOH).
— Channel News Asia

2018 is Singapore’s Eighth Warmest Year on Record
Singaporeans faced the eight warmest year on record in 2018 as the country saw a mean annual temperature on 27.9 degrees Celsius, announced the Meteorological Service (MSS) on Tuesday (15 January). In 2014, 2009, and 2005, Singaporeans saw also this temperature, which is 0.4 degrees Celsius higher than the long-term average between 1981 to 2001. It …
— The Online Citizen

Lim Tean teaches the public about defamation and how to properly air their grievances without breaking the law
Lawyer and politician, Lim Tean has come out with a video to educate the Singapore public about defamation, specifically what someone can or cannot say online based on the law. The 15-minute video posted on Facebook shows Lim Tean guiding an animated character called Winston on how he can vent his frustrations online without putting …
— The Online Citizen

Is Keppel Corporation Limited A Bargain Now?
Three ratios appear to indicate that Keppel Corp could be a bargain?
— Motley Fool sg

Methanol a dark horse in ‘alternative fuel’ race?
IT IS almost inconceivable anybody in the shipping industry is still unaware that the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) global 0.50 per cent sulphur-in-fuel cap comes into force in less than a year.
— The Business Times

Ofo’s licence to be suspended if it does not comply with requirements
Chinese bicycle-sharing operator ofo has breached multiple regulatory requirements and, yesterday, the Land Transport Authority (LTA) gave it a Feb 13 deadline to comply with them.
— Straits Times

Singapore shares are ‘cheap’ and ‘attractive’ — and major wealth managers say it’s time to buy
Singapore’s export-driven economy is among the most vulnerable in the ongoing U.S.-China trade conflict, but major investors said its stock market could deliver attractive returns this year.

MediShield Life caps to be reviewed more regularly
The Health Ministry will tweak healthcare financing to ensure it remains affordable for subsidised patients. This includes more frequent, three-yearly reviews on MediShield Life caps so they reflect healthcare inflation. It will also keep a close watch on public healthcare costs.
— Straits Times

Goh Chok Tong Enable Awards launched to recognise achievements of people with disabilities
The Goh Chok Tong (GCT) Enable Awards was launched on Tuesday (Jan 15) to recognise the achievements and potential of people with disabilities.
— Channel News Asia

Is Singapore Airlines Ltd A Bargain Now?
What do four separate financial ratios tell us about Singapore Airlines?
— Motley Fool sg

Love Dividends? Then, Check Out These 3 Singapore-Listed Banks
DBS Group Holdings Ltd (SGX: D05), United Overseas Bank Ltd (SGX: U11) and Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp Limited (SGX: O39) have provided growing dividends over the years.
— Motley Fool sg

Khaw: Woodlands-JB train project is “behind schedule” because M’sia is not engaging with S’pore
It will not be able to commence by end 2024.
— Mothership

Data theft – Singaporean job-seekers may be the next target
With the over 200 million resumes of Chinese nationals hacked and unofficially exposed online, there is strong possibility that Singaporean job seekers and professionals’ identity and private information will likewise be targeted by hackers considering the close ties that Singapore has with China. Such speculation emerges as a database containing CVs of more than 200 […]
— The Independent sg

MOE Kindergarten registration to go online from this year
Registration for Ministry of Education (MOE) Kindergartens or MK is set to become an online exercise, the ministry announced in a press release on Tuesday (Jan 15).
— Channel News Asia

Be bold, go for the ‘arts’ as a career
WHO says arts in Singapore doesn’t pay? The arts scene is brightly evolving to change the mindsets of the younger generation that they can make a sustainable living out of it. The four-letter word ‘arts’ is making heads turn as the seventh edition of Singapore Art Week (SAW), the biggest visual arts celebration here – […]
— The Independent sg

QR-code system for bike-sharing kicks in
An islandwide Quick Response (QR) code system to ensure that shared bicycles are parked within designated areas kicked in on Monday (Jan 14), catching some riders unawares.
— Channel News Asia


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Find our previous morning news feature photos in the AEC News Today Morning News Feature Photos gallery where you will find a pictorial display of daily life throughout the Asean Economic Community (AEC).

Singapore morning news by AEC News Today is your one stop source for Singapore news on matters of governance and policies affecting Asean business communities. It is published M-F by AEC News Today: Governance, not government; policies not politics.




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John Le Fevre

Thailand editor at AEC News Today

John is an Australian national with more than 40 years experience as a journalist, photographer, videographer, and copy editor.

He has spent extensive periods of time working in Africa and throughout Southeast Asia, with stints in the Middle East, the USA, and England.

He has covered major world events including Operation Desert Shield/ Storm, the 1991 pillage in Zaire, the 1994 Rwanda genocide, the 1999 East Timor independence unrest, the 2004 Asian tsunami, and the 2009, 2010, and 2014 Bangkok political protests.

In 1995 he was a Walkley Award finalist, the highest awards in Australian journalism, for his coverage of the 1995 Zaire (now Democratic Republic of Congo) Ebola outbreak.

Prior to AEC News Today he was the deputy editor and Thailand and Greater Mekong Sub-region editor for The Establishment Post, predecessor of Asean Today.

In the mid-80s and early 90s he owned JLF Promotions, the largest above and below the line marketing and PR firm servicing the high-technology industry in Australia. It was sold in 1995.

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